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Palm Springs, California 92263

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Meet Ric

Ric Simmons
IWA President


Life is filled with many seasons. 

Our mission is to live life through each season, not just exist.

Seven years in the making and "Ten Steps To Inclusive Practices", is now available!

Twenty years creating training programs for colleges taught me that how information is delivered is key to its comprehension and application.

Are you an ally in search of additional information and understanding? 

Follow the blueprint I've created: ten steps, ten actions!  

Weddings for Everyone
LGBTQIA+ Online Wedding Expo


Weddings for Everyone, our online Wedding Expo, connected couples to inclusive wedding professionals in a safe and fun environment.

Couples learned from various professionals as they shared five tips with attendees. 

Leading professionals recorded presentations exclusively for LGBTQIA+ couples. Our NGWA Member Exhibitors were able to practice and perfect their inclusive vocabulary! 

Exhibitors recorded a welcome message for couples. 

Couples who attended felt validated and seen. They were loved and hugged by Free Mom Hugs herself, Sara Cunningham.

Sign up and subscribe today to our YouTube channel.

Inclusive Awareness Conference
Share the Love


In 2022, we hosted the Inclusive Awareness Conference after three years of planning and navigating around pandemic shutdowns. 

Inclusive wedding influencers and leading advocates came together for a full day virtual event.

The inaugural conference focused on inclusiveness, and the speaker lineup was 100% representative of the LGBTQIA+ community. 

It was an uplifting day!

Speaker of the Year
NACE - Palm Springs Chapter


In 2021, I was awarded Speaker of the Year by the National Association for Catering & Events (NACE), Palm Springs Chapter for my presentation Being More Inclusive With Your Business.

The presentation focused on delivering a higher level of service to LGBTQIA+ couples by implementing inclusive business practices.

I was energized by the opportunity to speak and humbled to be honored as Speaker of the Year. 

I’ve been advocating for years for companies to offer inclusive education and training programs and it’s exciting to experience so many of us having the conversation! 

Let's turn those conversations into action!

Palm Springs & Southern California


I remember reading an article on trends for LGBTQIA+ weddings.

Many couples choose a close friend or relative to officiate their marriage. 

Becoming an officiant through the American Marriage Ministries (amm) has been a fun and rewarding experience.

Getting to work with couples as they plan their ceremony is a sacred time, and since I’m a romantic at heart, the feelings come naturally. 


Inclusive Speaker & Trainer

I landed in Chicago after school and quickly began my career in the education industry. I've won many awards and received recognition for my achievements while working in an industry that I found personally satisfying. I loved helping students achieve their goals. When your job is your passion, it's easy!

In 2000, I left the corporate world to become an entrepreneur. I also decided to start taking care of my health. 

In 2009, I bought a personal training studio and found my passion for helping adults achieve health and fitness goals. I was a passionate group fitness instructor. As a group fitness instructor, I found my passion and owning my own business put my future squarely in my own hands. I expanded my fitness studio and then sold the business a few years later. 

In 2015, I started MyTexasGayWedding.com after experiencing discrimination while planning my own wedding. 

LGBTQ+ Inclusive Certified
Equally Wed Pro


Passion leads to searching for knowledge and that's exactly what led me to get certified through Equally Wed Pro.

From learning the ABC's of LGBTQ+ language to sorting out pronouns, the program through Equally Wed Pro helped me focus and sharpen skills.

14 Stories
Gay Wedding Institute Certified


The first LGBTQIA+ certification program I took was called 14 Stories.

My husband and I traveled to Dallas to a beautiful ballroom to participate in the full day program.

Developed and taught by Bernadette Smith, made me hungry for more inclusive training and education!